Publication Abstracts

Lacis 2012

Lacis, A.A., 2012: Greenhouse effect. In Greenhouse Gases: Emission, Measurement and Management. G. Liu, Ed. InTech, pp. 275-294.

The greenhouse effect is the physical warming of the ground surface that arises in semitransparent planetary atmospheres that are heated by solar radiation. In order for the greenhouse effect to operate, the planet's atmosphere must be sufficiently transparent at visible wavelengths to allow significant amounts of solar radiation to be absorbed by the ground surface. The atmosphere must also be sufficiently opaque at thermal wavelengths to prevent thermal radiation emitted by the ground surface from escaping directly out to space. In such planetary atmospheres, the long-wave opacity for the absorption of radiation at thermal wavelengths is provided by the so-called greenhouse gases (e.g., water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide), although absorption by particulate matter such as that due to clouds and aerosols can also make significant contributions to the greenhouse effect. The net effect of the planetary greenhouse effect is to keep the ground surface of the planet at a warmer temperature than it would otherwise be if there were no greenhouse effect. The operation of a greenhouse effect also imparts a temperature gradient in the planet's atmosphere, with the highest temperatures being at the ground, decreasing with height in the atmosphere. This is primarily a radiative effect that is expected to occur in all planetary atmospheres where the ground surface is heated by solar radiation, and there is substantial atmospheric opacity at thermal wavelengths of the spectrum.

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BibTeX Citation

  author={Lacis, A. A.},
  editor={Liu, G.},
  title={Greenhouse effect},
  booktitle={Greenhouse Gases: Emission, Measurement and Management},
  address={Rijeka, Croatia},

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RIS Citation

ID  - la02400t
AU  - Lacis, A. A.
ED  - Liu, G.
PY  - 2012
TI  - Greenhouse effect
BT  - Greenhouse Gases: Emission, Measurement and Management
SP  - 275
EP  - 294
PB  - InTech
CY  - Rijeka, Croatia
ER  -

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